One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A free-standing abstract sculpture or structure, typically of wire or sheet metal, in the style of a mobile but rigid and stationary.
- ‘Like his delicate mobiles, the most graceful stabiles absorb and incorporate their environment; they remain still while the viewer revolves around their ever-changing open shapes.’
- ‘Jean began by showing slides of work by Alexander Calder, the American artist who built mobiles and stabiles, initially out of paper, then large sheets of steel.’
- ‘Calder - genius, creator of the mobile and the stabile - was a splendidly practical character.’
- ‘After he had invented mobiles and stabiles, he became more confident, and his work became much larger.’
- ‘Most of Calder's sculptures - especially his mobiles and stabiles - used the ideas of Constructivism, which had first been developed by Vladimir Tatlin in Russia.’
1940s: from Latin stabilis ‘stable’, influenced by mobile.
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